Melindo defends title for the first time against South African Budler

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STARDOM is ripe for the taking for IBF world light flyweight division lynchpin Milan “El Metodico” Melindo (36-2; 13KOs), according to respected boxing analyst and boxing historian Attorney Ed Tolentino.

“The country is looking for a new boxing hero and I think Milan, even if he’s a little guy, he can fill this void,” said Tolentino.

This is the reason why, Tolentino said, it is important for Melindo to score the big victory in “Pinoy Pride 42: Clash For Glory” this Saturday (Sept. 16) at the Waterfront Hotel and Casino in Cebu City, which will be airing on ABS-CBN this Sunday (Sept. 17) at 3:30 p.m. and on prime time on S+A at 6:30 p.m.

“El Metodico” will be defending his title for the first time after decking Akira Yaegashi against his toughest opponent to date in South African Hekkie “The Hexecutioner” Budler (31-2; 10KOs), the current ruler in the IBF light flyweight division.

Tolentino said Melindo must stay true to his moniker of “El Metodico” if he wants to win against his formidable opponent. “Budler is a pocket rocket, he is the one that’s going to instigate the hostilities. It is for Milan to stay in cruise control and not have this fight dictated by emotions. Keep it tactical, avoid the brutality that Budler will bring into this fight, which Milan has already proven that he can do.”

Meanwhile, the “Pinoy Pride 42” fight card itself packs quite a punch with Jason “El Niño” Pagara (40-2; 25KOs) also facing James Onyango (23-11-1; 19KOs) of Kenya in his continued quest to earn a title fight, while looking for his 14th-straight win dating back to 2011.

Another thing to look forward in this edition of ALA Promotions and ABS-CBN’s boxing series are the showdowns between fellow Filipinos, which has never been done before. Great Filipino prospects John Reil Casimero (24-3; 15KOs) and Jonas Sultan (13-3; 9KOs) will figure in a title eliminator bout for the right to challenge the IBF World Jr. Bantamweight champion Jerwin Ancajas, another Pinoy. Likewise, rising stars Kevin Jake Cataraja and Wiljan Ugbaniel must put aside ties as they square off in the undercard. Aside from them, “King” Arthur Villanueva (30-2; 16KOs) will also look to get back on the winning track against Richie Mepranum (31-6-1) after dropping his last bout.